Monday, September 17, 2007

The Monday Morning Wash

If you are a Husky fan Saturday was very tough to watch because victory was very much in the grasp until a series of fatal breakdowns in the third quarter provided Ohio State with a 14 point turn around.

..."it felt like a fistfight...I feel like I have been hit by a truck........I haven't been hit that hard in a long time.... we were told they would not let up and they didn't."

That was a quote from one of the Ohio State players, and while UW lost the game because of way too many mistakes, one thing is very evident. The old UW toughness is coming back, and one of the toughest football programs in football history felt like it had been run over by a truck.

Of course this is small solace after such a tough loss, but it is a very good sign that the legacy of Owens, James, and Lambright is finally back playing in Husky Stadium. This is a good Husky team, not a great one, but a good one capable of beating anyone, and they learned some very tough lessons out there on the field Saturday that will help them in the future.

My brother in law who I watched the game with said they had plenty of opportunities to bury Ohio State, but when the Buckeyes were still in the game mid third quarter experience, depth, and talent took over. tOSU may be a little down, but they do have a legacy of knowing how to win, and are very good at wearing down an opponent, and that is what ended up happening on Saturday afternoon.

Late in the game the camera's panned the Ohio State coaching staff, and they looked relived to me rather than jubliant. You could see in their eyes that they had a lot of respect for Washington, and they felt they had just succesfully traveresed a mine field.

Up next is UCLA who is coming off what can only be termed as a shocking loss to Utah. UCLA gave the Ute's plenty to work with and they took advantage almost every time in a 44-6 upset on Saturday. The Utes forced five turnovers and kept the Bruins from scoring a touchdown for the first time in four years. Utah outscored UCLA 30-0 in the second half! This was a team that was blown out a couple of weeks ago by one dimensional Oregon St? The Bruins committed 10 penalties and unraveled in the second half of their first-ever loss to Utah .

My point is who would you rather be Monday morning? UCLA, or Washington? who is playing closer to their potential right now? UCLA, or Washington?

The Huskies always have problems in the Rose Bowl, but as I have said all Summer the Bruins have big problems despite all the talent they have stockpiled. Dorrell is losing his team early this year. historically UCLA has a tendency to fold after a game like this.

Willingham and Lappano have out coached these guys every time they have played. sure we are 1-1 against them in this era, but we are only a missed tackle away from being 2-0. I really like Washington's chances next weekend in Los Angeles.

Keep you heads up Husky fans, last week was a tough loss, but consider the fact that Ohio State is likely to end the season in the top ten and head to another BCS bowl. Consider the fact that two years ago they would have blown us out of the stadium. Most importantly consider the fact that he had a good chance to beat these guys if we had executed better, and taken what they were giving us.

Pac Ten Round Up

We already talked about the UCLA/Utah debacle, but Rick Neuheisel must be licking his chops right now realizing that he is good shape to take over his alma mater nest season if the slide continues.

Justin Forsett didn't think much about tearing through Louisiana Tech's defense for 152 yards and a career-best three touchdowns. The California tailback only dwelled on that play where he tackled himself by tripping over his own feet -- and the other play where he ran smack into the back of Brian De La Puente, his own offensive lineman. The No. 8 Golden Bears are both unbeaten and unsatisfied after finishing their non conference schedule with a 42-12 victory Saturday.

Oregon State had no problem getting back on track beating Idaho State 61-10. Jesuit HS was busy. Sean Canfield threw for 353 yards and three touchdowns, Sammie Stroughter had 160 yards receiving and two touchdowns, and Oregon State cruised to a 61-10 win over Idaho State Saturday.

Dennis Dixon left the dramatics to Jonathan Stewart. While Dixon threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, Jonathan Stewart ran for 165 yards and No. 19 Oregon beat Fresno State 52-21 on Saturday night. Stewart scored two touchdowns, including a flashy 88-yard dash to the end zone, and the Ducks (3-0) outrushed the Bulldogs 307-60.

In many ways, it was just like the old days at Nebraska, with a top-ranked team running all over an overmatched opponent in front of a crazy crowd at Memorial Stadium. The difference was the Cornhuskers were the team getting pushed around Saturday night and No. 1 Southern California was doing the dominating. The Trojans got physical with the No. 14 Nebraska in a 49-31 victory, piling up 313 yards on the ground. Stafon Johnson led USC's tailback brigade with 144 yards and the Trojans averaged 8.2 yards per rush.

Donovan Porterie threw for 327 yards and three touchdowns Saturday night, and New Mexico beat a Pac-10 team for the second time in school history, 29-27 over mistake-prone Arizona. Mike Stoops better hope his brother has a spot open next year on the Oklahoma staff because his team is going in the wrong direction quickly.

Alex Brink threw for 307 yards and four touchdowns as Washington State beat Idaho 45-28 in the 90th Battle of the Palouse on Saturday. It was another win for the Cougars, but giving up 28 points against a hapless team like Idaho spells big trouble at WSU.

Rudy Carpenter threw for 200 yards and two touchdowns and Keegan Herring filled in for leading rusher Ryan Torain with two scores as well in Arizona State's 34-13 win Saturday night over San Diego State. I don't know what to think of ASU at this point. If you measure them against WSU after this one it isn't that impressive.

Toby Gerhart ran for 140 yards and a touchdown Saturday night to lead Stanford to its first win in seven tries in its newly renovated stadium, 37-0 over San Jose State in the Cardinal's first shutout in more than a decade. SJSU seems to have taken a major step backward. Good first win by Coach Harbaugh.

Pac Ten Power Ratings

1. Southern California....the Trojans win with style points over Nebraska to keep the #1 rating in the polls. (Rising)

2. California....After stumbling around last week the Bears put together a complete game on both sides of the ball against an undermanned opponent. (Holding)

3. Oregon....The Ducks offense is in high gear, and Jonathan Stewart is starting to come to form. I still have doubts about their defense, but the Michigan win looks better this week. (Rising)

4. Arizona State....The Sun Devils haven't had a challenging schedule to open the season with, but they are undefeated and until someone exposes them I am keeping them in the upper division. (Holding)

5. Washington....The Huskies have the nations toughest schedule and head into UCLA next week 2-1. but it could have been 3-0 if they had eliminated the mistakes. (Holding)

6. UCLA....The Bruins are in trouble after getting bounced badly by the Ute's. Washington is next in the Rose Bowl. (Falling)

6. Oregon State....Whenever you drub a team like Idaho State it really means nothing, but Riley is a good coach that makes his team better every week. (Rising)

8. Washington State....The Cougars are giving up way too many points, but that offense gives them a chance in most games. (Rising)

9. Stanford....That was a good win by Harbaugh and company over SJSU, and a good step in the right direction towards getting a little respect in the Bay Area. (Rising)

10. Arizona....The Wildcats shouldn't be this bad at this stage of Stoops rebuilding process. But like Oregon State are 1-0 in the Big Sky. (Falling)


prrbrr said...

HIE, a tough one, we ahd them on the ropes but couldn't put them away. Good coaching and talent on OSU prevailed. I loved Nathan Wares analysis on what went wrong. OSU coaching went after our weaknesses and no pressure on a new QB did us in. That is why I am fearful of UCLA, the UTES rattled Ben Olson, if we stay in the soft zone, we are doomed again here in CoCal at the RB. While our freshman mistakes were pointed out by all, the TNT had a great artical that shares the blame across all classes. Based on history here, its hard not to go with UCLA in a rout or a nail biter. My heart as always is with the Dawgs, 31-28.

Health Insurance Expert said...

To reverse an old adage "We kept the favorite in the game too long". We could have been up on these guys by around 20-17 at halftime, and took them completely out of their gameplan, and we just didn't get it done.

Chalk it all up to inexperience. I think we can beat UCLA, and have had it circled as a win all year.

prrbrr said...

JB, one other thing. In the practice I attended, saw the Dawgs run thru most everything they used, shovel pass, reverse, quick hit to WR, pooch KO, and the shifts we saw in ist qtr. Worked well against scout team, the difference being the actual speed of tOSU linebackers. I thought it was a good game plan, Execute, execute.

BP said...

You guys gave it a good run, but Ohio State made a lot of mistakes that are uncharacteristic of a Jim Tressel team in a big game, that first field goal and letting a field goal get blocked are both very rare. Although this is by far the best game Ohio State has played all year.

I will say that there were a lot of Jake Locker fans made on Saturday. I thought that given the speed of our linebackers he wouldn't be able to run those draws and zone options to the outside with any success, but he did it and I was impressed.

Good luck the rest of the year, I hope you guys give it to USC.

Anonymous said...

I was really impressed with Locker and really the team as a whole. Nothing to be ashamed of in that guys are almost there.

Health Insurance Expert said...

Bp- thanks for the compliments, we are a hair off right now, but we are getting closer and better. Hats off to Ohio State for being th class team that they are, they played their best game of the year.

This is game three of Jakes first year, so better times are ahead for us, and in the not too distant future.

I can't complain, we had our chances, but the experienced team won this one. OSU knows how to win, and it will carry yout through the growing pains this year.

Health Insurance Expert said...

Anonymous- thanks for the post...We are getting closer, we need another recruiting class or two to get back to full strength, but we are finally playing Husky football win, or lose.

Hangonskoky said...

I'm an OSU student who made a trip to the game. Washington has a Sweet Stadium, and Sweet fans. I was surpised to get some flack from Huskies fans, but it was great and shows the passion in Seattle. I hope to see the Huskies do well in the future!

Health Insurance Expert said...

Hangonskoky thanks for posting!

You bring up a good point, and while Husky Stadium is a traditionally friendly venue there are always drunk idiots everywhere you go.

I am glad that you enjoyed Seattle and Husky stadium. It will be extra sweet once they remodel it in coming years.

Sorry about any flack you received, but it seems that guys your age on both sides of the fence are more rowdy these days towards opposing fans which can take some of the fun out of it.

When I go to away games I tend to wear neutral colors until I hit the stands, then I show my purple and gold. After more than a few scary incidents at places like Oregon, and Miami I started doing that, and have a much better time.

I had a couple of frat guys push me around at Oregon because I wore a sweater vest, but I just happened to be with a very large UO fan and former player and they backed off. Cowardice usually travels in a three pack.